Perceptions, Determination, Love as Aspects of Consciousness

Pathwork Guide Lecture No. 115 | May 24, 1963

Greetings, my dearest friends. Blessings for each one of you. Blessed be this hour. May all my friends continue to grow and develop, for that is the essence of life itself.

Where there is no growth, there is no life. This does not only apply to the physical manifestation of life, but to the source itself. There are, of course, different stages and manners of growth. In some instances the growing process is indirect and gradual, the person being unaware even of the possibility of inner growth. Then the growth can be perceived only much later, in a state of increased consciousness. If growing stops on any level of life, the respective manifestation of life ceases. But since spirit is eternal, it must potentially be growth; spirit cannot die. Its growth and unfoldment can be arrested if its manifest forms are not in the process of growth, and therefore not alive. Non-life is non-growth. Life, as growth, proceeds in degrees. Between being alive or not alive, being in growth or not, there are many gradations.

We have discussed life, its meaning, significance, definition and manifestation, from many points of view. Each time I choose to discuss an angle of life — or of any other topic, for that matter — I adjust my words to the level you have reached in the course of your development; they are designed to penetrate to a still deeper root of understanding in your soul, according to your progress. Through your work of self-search, deeper levels of understanding are opened up, so that words of truth will directly reach those inner levels — or have at least a chance of doing so. It is therefore important to discuss the same subjects from different vantage points at specific phases of your pathwork. What you have heretofore understood in a shallow way will then be more profoundly comprehended. Always use your new understanding in conjunction with proper meditation. These lectures can be regarded as meditations.

People sometimes believe themselves to be in a growing process, while they are merely going around in circles. Undirected or misdirected methods of self-confrontation often bring this about. In such a case, people may be outwardly convinced of growing, because they are going through the motions, but inwardly they know that this is not so. On the other hand, those who are truly in the process of growth may often feel temporarily discouraged, believing they are going around in circles. Inwardly, however, they occasionally already experience and see their inner growth. They feel it. First this happens only after periods of apparent setbacks and relapses, after finding the same aspects, attitudes and distortions over and over again, yet forever discovering new connections, shedding new light on the same disturbances, deliberating on them in different expressions of thought. Considering them in different ways fortifies and consolidates the recognitions, widens and deepens their perception. It links them with other aspects of the personality.

All my friends who are truly on the path have observed the spiral movement it pursues, coming around full circle, meeting the same problematic area all over again. The second time comprehension occurs on a deeper level. The tenth time it will be deeper than it was the ninth time around. The circles get narrower and narrower, until they meet at one basic point of disturbance that can only then be fully faced, understood, tackled and come to terms with. In principle, the process is the same as my taking an important concept and deliberating on it from different angles. This, too, follows the spiral movement according to the capacity and level that you have reached. One might say there are two parallel spiral movements: one pursues the disturbance, the other shows the true picture that compliments it. To the degree that you are aware of and properly evaluate the distortion, the true picture can be assimilated into the deeper regions of your personality.

Considered superficially, growth and stagnation often seem similar, because both follow circular movements. Only a closer perception and deep penetration into your self will show you the difference. True, sometimes the same circle has to be repeated before you can proceed from it into the next, narrower one. But whenever the transition to the next circle is made, the reality of the forward movement will fill you to the depth of your being. You will then know that you are not moving in a stationary circle.

We discussed various aspects and meanings of life. Let us again approach this topic, this time from yet another viewpoint. Life exists if a number of factors prevail. As I said previously, life is movement; life is growth; life is consciousness — and more — all ending up at one and the same point. But each of these points is still separate and distinct. The conglomeration of all of them forms one whole, one organization. An organization is a conglomerate of several particles. The absence of any of the particles destroys, or at least seriously impedes, the organization as a whole. Think, for example, of a business firm. Different officers fulfill certain tasks, each taking on specific responsibilities. If one drops out, he or she has to be replaced, for otherwise the organization could not function.

The same applies to the anatomy of the physical body. It, too, is an organization. The well-functioning body requires many working parts. If one is out of commission, the efficacy of the physical body will be impaired, or physical life will cease, depending on whether the part was a vital one or not.

Exactly the same law holds true for the inner organization of life. The average human being does not have all inner faculties in good working order. As a result, the degree of awareness is below par and the person is only half alive — often even less than that.

The interaction between consciousness and aliveness, that is movement, is easily observable in the manifestations of nature. A mineral has a very small degree of consciousness; therefore its movement is almost imperceptible. A plant’s degree of consciousness is higher. This is noticeable by its obvious response to light, water, darkness or dryness. Therefore its movement is also more perceptible. And so growth proceeds along the scale, from animal to human.

Now you may say that the human being’s movement does not exceed the animal’s. This is true on the physical level, but you will undoubtedly admit that in the movement of mind, thought, spirit, man is more alive than the animal. The range of the possibilities for the extension and movement of the spirit by far exceeds that of the body. Once this thought is truly understood in its full implication, any doubt about the continuation of life must cease. Life’s continuity will no longer be the subject of pleasant or unpleasant assumptions or theories, but will be seen as a logical sequence of an unbroken chain. There is no reason to assume that the chain would suddenly terminate.

Your possibility to extend your range of consciousness is, of course, limited because of the confinement of your spirit. Only after you have fully utilized the range of extension available to you, will such confinement no longer be necessary. And only when you fully utilize your possibilities will you be in harmony with yourself and your life. If you view the pathwork from this angle, your deeper understanding may give you renewed incentive and strength.

Let us now discuss three distinctive, major facets that are part of the organization called life. These three aspects are direct manifestations of consciousness. They are: determination, perception and love. The higher the degree of consciousness, the wider the range of life, and the greater the freedom of determination. Your free will, or determination, will not be hindered by the inner fetters we are trying to find and dissolve. You all know how your determination, is limited by your unconscious misconceptions. To the degree you are capable of assimilating experience according to reality, according to truth, to that degree can you perceive, determine and love.

A living creature is always the product, the sum total, of all its past experiences. How experience is assimilated and understood in terms of reality determines the character, the thoughts and the opinions a person has adopted and explains his or her feelings and emotions, attitudes and inclinations. In other words, it determines the quality of a person’s life. The more realistically and truthfully experience is interpreted and assimilated, the more accurate the perception. The freer the determination, the greater the scope and ease with which decisions can be made, the greater the capacity to love, to relate.

It should be easy to see the interaction and interdependence of these three facets. For example: If you are relatively free of error, of misinterpreted past experience — that is, images — you will have less destructive defenses. Therefore you can be more loving. This, in turn, will create good relationships, which will afford you a wider range for experience, more possibilities, more inner and outer resources that give you a greater scope for determination. Even if you experience a disappointment, you will be able to see other opportunities. The disappointment will not paralyze your faculties and freeze your feelings into fear and distrust, such as happens with incorrectly assimilated experience.

To understand the effect of this triadic interaction is of great importance. You will see even more clearly why it is so important to find your images; to understand why they represent faulty perception; to see that the faulty perception still governs you, even though it was formed when you were a child. You will see to what extent you are governed by the faulty perception, how it continues to impede proper interpretation and assimilation of new experiences. You will understand how the perpetuated faulty perception cripples your determination and your entire world of feeling.

You are bound by the old images, the faulty perceptions, which make you respond and react in an automatic way, as though the new experience were identical in nature to the one that originally caused you to misinterpret a painful condition or occurrence. You saw that in a limited, one-sided way and generalized its validity for all similar occasions. The result is that you react in a way inappropriate to the occasion. You are unable to change this unless you bring the misinterpretation into consciousness and thoroughly understand why and in what way you have misinterpreted the event. Only then will your responses be more adequate to and compatible with reality. This will free you from limitation and from frozen feelings.

When religious teachers preach about the importance of love, they are right, but love cannot fill your being if you do not detect your wrong perceptions. No amount of knowledge you take in from the outside can be assimilated if you do not empty yourself of misconception. Therefore, self-knowledge is the prerequisite to love, to spirituality. There is no way around that. No matter how much truth you try to imbibe, no matter how hard you try to feel what inwardly you are as yet incapable of feeling, your inner mechanisms are still geared to faulty, or insufficiently assimilated material. This, in turn, forces you into reflexes so automatic, so limited, that you cannot perceive in reality. Therefore you cannot determine as fully and widely as possible, and so you cannot feel the productive warm feelings of love that create a benign circle connecting the three life-aspects.

My friends, try to see how your images limit your perception, your determination and your love capacity. Try to see how the faulty perception, responsible for the images, squeezes you into a very limited mold, no matter what you consciously think and strive for. If you ponder your images from this angle, you will clearly see how your consciousness is diminished, and how your feeling of being alive is reduced. The vibrancy of true aliveness is so very rare among human beings because most do not even search in the right direction.

The significance of misinterpreted material from the past cannot be stressed enough. The majority of human beings go through life never knowing to what extent they are influenced in all their present-day dealings by their past. Even among you, my friends, only a few have begun to fully realize this. You may be aware to some degree that such misinterpretation has taken place, but you cannot as yet fully grasp its impact.

Parents are the most important influence in a child’s life. The relationship to them is of primary significance. Others, such as teachers, siblings, or anyone closely related, also play a significant role in forming the original impressions in the child’s malleable soul substance. But these others are only important in relationship to, and as determined by, the original relationship to the parents. Most of you need to realize to what a strong degree you still carry the original relationship to both your parents into all your current life-situations. Once you perceive this in all its significance, you will truly be liberated. But it requires a great deal of work, patience, perseverance, courage and humility to follow through and arrive at this point.

The best way to experience the truth of these words is to apply them to any of your findings. Consider how you felt as a child toward each parent, then see how in your present responses you still react according to the same feelings. Only by working through this lecture on a very personal, practical basis will you experience the truth. It does not suffice to believe that this is so merely because it makes sense. A systematic work of self-finding is necessary to understand this transference in its full measure.

The realization of your bondage to early reactions will free you of it — nothing else will, no matter how much knowledge, even spiritual knowledge, you try to collect from the outside. This awareness alone will raise your level of consciousness and fill you with the vibrant feeling of being truly alive. Your awareness, and therefore your life, can grow only through these insights into your self. By becoming aware of your unreality, you live in greater reality. By becoming aware of your lack of love — clothed perhaps in what appears to be love, but is not — you will have more love. The feeling of strength, of well-being, of fulfillment, of trust in yourself, of security, can grow only by facing in yourself what you would rather not see. It is always a temptation to look away from yourself.

Ever since humanity has existed, people have searched for security. The lack of it is, perhaps, the greatest factor responsible for all the misery human beings have managed to afflict on themselves. This is so because you look for it in the wrong way with the result that you are disappointed, and even more insecure, and hopeless of ever finding it. You wish to have your fears, anxieties and uncertainties assuaged from the outside. But if this ever works, it only does so for a very limited time, and afterwards you must feel let down.

Only after material security has been attained do people discover that there is a type of insecurity they were not able to recognize as long as they were preoccupied with the material side of life. For a while you may succeed in disregarding the gnawing feeling of insecurity that clamors for alleviation. You may drown out this voice by all sorts of evasions, pleasurable or painful, constructive or destructive. But eventually the moment must come when you can no longer avoid confronting your inner uncertainty. You must raise questions you have never dared to face. You must bring out exactly what it is you are so insecure about. But until such time, you will find ways of stilling the clamoring voice by outer, and therefore inadequate, illusory means. The only realistic way of meeting your insecurity is by facing it, admitting it, accepting it. That is the start. Then comes finding the inner answers through the understanding of the inner errors, misconceptions, faulty perceptions. Only this will bring true security, resting on firm ground, that will withstand the storms of life.

As I implied before, finding illusory security from the outside need not necessarily be a worthless pursuit. You may try to escape from yourself by doing good for society; by performing valuable scientific, artistic, or ethical work. Such pursuits are, in themselves, constructive and can help others. They go under the heading of escape because security cannot be found outside the self. A person may, while performing such tasks, drown out his or her inner insecurity. But you will readily admit that this is not a real solution. It is precarious and can fail when something goes wrong. To find inner security in the real way does not mean to cease doing good works. They can surely be continued while establishing the center of gravity within.

How can you love if you are insecure?  It is not possible. Again, of course, there are degrees; it is not a question of either/or. There are areas in which a person is secure and therefore may be capable of love. But to the degree insecurity permeates the soul, complete capacity for loving is absent. Let us now connect inner security with love and evaluate various stages on the scale of love-capacity.

The basis of loving is healthy self-love. We have discussed this extensively in the past. But I will add this:  If you are insecure, you cannot trust yourself. If you do not trust yourself, how can you love yourself?  So you see, healthy self-love and inner security are directly linked. And since love for others is dependent on healthy self-love, the former is equally dependent on and connected with inner security.

Let us now consider other stages of love. Lowest on the scale is surely love for inanimate objects. There are many whose inherent need to display love does not dare go any further than loving inanimate objects. That is their sole outlet. Objects do not oppose. They do not require the complicated mechanism of perceiving the feelings of another. They do not disapprove or criticize. They demand a minimum of personal sacrifice or consideration. Objects will make no demands.

Next on the scale is love for abstract ideas, principles, art, nature. The love for one’s profession can also fall into this category. Love for abstract ideas evades personal involvement with the accompanying apparent risks, but, at least, it moves the mind, soul or spirit in some measure. It may also require some personal contact, confrontation with others of different opinions, while love for objects may not necessitate this in any but the most rudimentary form. Love for ideas and principles is certainly more outgoing than the isolating pursuit of loving mere objects.

Next on the scale is love for living creatures other than humans: plants or animals. They require a certain amount of sacrifice, consideration, putting one’s immediate selfish comfort aside — at least occasionally, if the love is active and not merely theoretical. It does neither require the risk of rejection, nor taking the trouble of pondering what the other’s needs are, or the effort to establish mutual understanding. Though to a very minor degree this may apply to keeping and caring for an animal, but certainly not to the degree required in a close relationship with another human being, where one’s senses have to be alert to the other person as well as to oneself.

Next on the scale is love for humankind as a whole. This may still relieve a person from intimate personal involvement — the most taxing form of love, and therefore the most fulfilling one. But it does require effort, thought, the willingness to sacrifice, activity, and many other attitudes that are highly constructive. Again this applies only if such love is followed through in practice, rather than remaining a theory only.

Highest on the scale is the love for individuals in close, intimate relationship. I do not have to repeat why, for I explained it in connection with the lower degrees of love. If you ponder this question, you will find many other reasons for it to be by far the most constructive and the highest on the scale. The fact that you, and those you are involved with, may often demonstrate love by turbulent manifestations that have nothing to do with genuine love but indicate immature needs and dependency and thus often bring rupture and disharmony, does not alter the truth that even such intercommunication furthers your general development and capacity for love. A life of turbulent relationships may be infinitely less harmonious than the life of a hermit or a recluse, but the process of inner growth cannot be gauged by apparent outer harmony.

It may be comparatively easy for you to cope with the difficulty of interacting with certain people, but you may dread relating to others. If so, do not fail to question whether you do not run from the very area in which you most need growth. Beware of a quick, superficial evaluation. Only when you question your fears and insecurities, your reactions to those aspects of love that you wish to avoid, will you begin to sense a truthful answer. This will not harm you, even should you decide to postpone exposing yourself to what still seems threatening to you. Then at least you will not deceive yourself about the level you have reached.

Some of you may wonder about the scale of love I have established. You might think that the love for God would fall under the category of love for abstract ideas and principles. You may also wonder why I did not mention the love for God as the highest level on the scale. You see, my friends, love for God can be healthy and genuine. It can as well be an escape. If it is healthy and genuine, it manifests through the love for others with whom one is able to communicate and relate. This, in turn, cannot happen unless you overcome your fears and vanities; unless you find and dissolve the obstructions in you that cause inability and unwillingness to love. Humans need not preoccupy themselves with speculations about the inconceivable and incomprehensible existence of the Creator of all beings. Have the humility to admit the limitations of such understanding and turn your attention to the things human beings can learn, namely to give to and love other human beings. So it is possible, as I often said, that an avowed non-believer is in fact closer to loving God than a professed believer. The former may not shy away from taxing involvement and mutual growth through it, while the latter may hide his wish to escape under an unhealthy preoccupation with an abstract God-idea that could anyway never be really understood through mental processes. The only way to come closer to an experience of God is through inner growth and liberation of feelings, perception and determination.

If God is not an inner experience, derived through self-development, but the pursuit of an idea or ideal, it falls under the category of love for abstract ideas or principles and is, as such, of lesser value than the intimate relationship of human love that requires practical involvement, the flexibility of putting one’s egocentric aims below the needs of the other person. To love God as an idea does not require any of this, but to love Him through a fellow-creature does. Through the deep understanding of the self, the understanding of others grows, and through that a perception of the divine.

An intense relationship that is often turbulent because of blind egocentricity, selfishness, or possessiveness may certainly appear to be the product of a less evolved human being than the apparent serenity of a person who does many good works for humanity, but who lives a life secluded from personal involvement. It may indeed be true that the latter is actually more developed in general, but in the area of close involvement he or she surely needs to learn. It may be true that people whose immaturity shows in stormy relationships are indeed more immature and may indeed have a troubled soul. But such people, at least, are truly in the midst of life, not avoiding its lessons even if they cannot, or will not, understand them yet. Nevertheless, in the end the experience itself will be what counts, because then the way will be open to properly evaluate and assimilate it, to sort out error from truth, proper perception from misinterpretation.

How can you perceive that there is something amiss, if you do not expose yourself to experiencing what you may perhaps fear, even while you also desire it to some degree?  How can you raise your perception, how can you free your scope of determination, how can you purify your capacity of loving, if you do not go through and face the impure, self-centered form of love you are now capable of?  By avoiding it, you do not grow out of it.

All of you who persevere in the pathwork know that you indeed do what is most essential. Go on searching, even though at times you feel discouraged. You will not regret it, provided you do so wholeheartedly and not because you fulfill an unpleasant duty.

Those of you who have not, as yet, ventured onto this path, think about your anxieties and your insecurities and realize in what ways you try to assuage them. See how you run away from yourself. This may perhaps induce you to seek a more reliable remedy for what really ails you. The most beautiful prayers, the loftiest thoughts can never replace utter self-facing and making conscious what heretofore slumbered in the hidden recesses of your soul.

And now, my friends, to your questions.

QUESTION:  Is the introverted person someone who withdraws from life, or do you consider the introverted person normal?

ANSWER:  You see, my dear, here we are dealing with terminology. Some terms have a different meaning for different people or different schools of thought. The word “introverted” may mean to some people introspection, looking within. To others it may mean withdrawal from the outer world. As to the latter case, I do not have to elaborate further.

But if you mean the word in the former sense, I have this to say: It very much depends on the how, never on the what. If we are preoccupied with the what, we will surely run the risk of misunderstanding and of erroneous, confused, unclear thinking. If we remain focused on the how, we will gain clarity. If introversion leads to facing oneself and then utilizing the material to become more whole, better equipped to deal with feelings, with others, better able to expand, then introversion is healthy.

In other words, if introversion leads to healthy extroversion, it furthers true growth. If self-preoccupation is fruitless, not constructive, and revolves around the same pointless thoughts, complaints, self-pity, self-deceptive ideas and subterfuges, it will, of necessity, result in drawing a wall of isolation around the person indulging in such a destructive activity of the mind. It is, indeed, escapism. But, by the same token, the extroverted person can escape and run from facing the inner truth as well. This kind of extroversion will never take the form of true relating. The extroverted person can also be introspective. Any healthy person creates a balance between these two directions of being. A preponderance of one is surely a sign of imbalance. Introspection must lead to outgoingness, to spontaneity, to reaching out to others. This, in turn, must be assimilated, digested, evaluated, so as to enrich the soul and learn the lessons life has to offer. This period will enable the person to cope even better with the outer world and to become joyfully involved in life. The alternating rhythm is truly an expression of life, of harmony, of the entire movement of the universe that you can find all through nature. It is in the breathing of the body, in the movements of the planets, in the waves of the ocean. It is in the physical manifestation of the cosmos, as well as in the mental, emotional and spiritual waves of being.

Genuine self-searching will never make a person self-centered and withdrawn. If this is the effect, the work of self-confrontation is somehow off. Then the person needs guidance to get on the right track.

QUESTION:  Would you have a special message for our friend W.?

ANSWER:  I cannot add anything to what I have already told him. He is blessed and guided. I can only repeat and emphasize that he has grown more than he may realize. There is much in him that he can utilize, but in a relaxed way, with no pressure and strain on the thought process. Rather, he should release all the material of growth that has accumulated in him. It will bring him joy, more and more.

And I say to all of you: Humans so often have a very distorted view about the essential issues of life, such faulty perceptions, such wrong values!  Often what you consider “bad” is the best from a wider spectrum, from a point of view of reality. And what you consider favorable and “good” may, in reality, be the most unfavorable occurrence. Only gradually will your view readjust to a more appropriate perception of life.

Often, you are potentially ready to gain a glimpse of reality, to experience its beauty and wisdom, but the fetters of your habits in thinking and feeling prevent you from shedding these shackles. You may even feel somewhat guilty when you do so, because are burdened with a mistaken concept that only heavy thoughts and feelings indicate a depth of personality. It may seem frivolous to rejoice in the brighter aspects of reality in which all is as it should be. If you would only allow the growth that has taken place in you to manifest!  These new perceptions are so much more reliable than your often superimposed “good” obsolete reactions and responses. Let the gathered inner maturity come out, instead of pushing it back because you cling to false concepts without realizing it. Part of the work on the path is finding the  unpleasant, faulty aspects of yourself that are painful, humiliating and unflattering. You have by now learned that this unpleasant moment need not last long if you proceed further. The other part of the pathwork is finding the true values, constructive inclinations, thoughts and feelings that you hold down artificially because you erroneously believe them to be wrong. Accepting your self’s inherent value is sometimes as difficult, or even more so, than facing your destructiveness. This may be so for a variety of reasons we will look into some other time. For now, suffice it to say that you should be on the lookout for what is positive in you.

You often jeopardize your inner security by pursuing wrong values and by fearing uncertainty that need not be feared. You often artificially encourage negative feelings, though the real you is free of them. This real you may be, at times, quite far away. But at other times, it may be much nearer than you make allowance for.

QUESTION:  Would the acceptance of reality be a prerequisite for love?

ANSWER:  Yes, indeed. I think this very lecture dealt with this very point. I would say, it works both ways: If you can accept reality, you are surely more capable of loving. And if, through your inner growth, through facing yourself in complete candor, through dispensing with all defenses and resistances, you reach a point of love-capacity, you simultaneously become much better equipped to accept reality. Your resistance to accept what seems to you unpleasant reality is the same energy-current that, if released, is the power of love. Negative emotions are a result of closing the door to reality and to loving. That they are interdependent is evident for they are really both the same.

Faulty perception means not being in, or not seeing, reality. Warm, outgoing feelings of affection, concern, understanding are an outcome of the true perception of reality-factors, and they simultaneously lead to an increase in perceiving reality in an ever-widening circle in width and depth. The more this is the case, the less can such productive feelings be replaced by a false and weakening sentimentality. When fear of true deep feelings vanishes, the psyche no longer needs to produce falsely positive feelings. Such fear is a result of self-centeredness which is the opposite of love. And the same self-centeredness is therefore responsible for creating false, unreal “good” feelings.  This is another angle that shows you how the equation has to come out, from any way you look at it.

One of the most important aspects of faulty perception of reality is the belief that one may be quite healthy in one respect, while one is in conflict and has problems in another area of one’s personality. This is quite impossible. One affliction must, to some degree, affect other personality areas. One thing is intimately connected with another. If you have, for instance, difficulty in making decisions, believing yourself very limited in scope, while perhaps overestimating your possibilities in other respects, such an impaired determination must definitely affect all other personality traits and attitudes. If you have difficulty in relating and coping with certain types of people, avoiding them will not remove the problem, because the difficulty, expressed in your discomfort, affects all other manifestations and expressions of your life. It is for that reason that you should heed all discomforts as warning signals, rather than avoiding them. Avoiding discomfort proves that you are still convinced that your psyche, your entire personality in fact, is divided into little compartments, some of them healthy and fine, others distorted and conflicted. This faulty perception surely shows how limited your view of reality is.

The connection and interdependence has to be established if you want to grow out of your blindness and enslavement. Of course, in some aspects of life you function relatively well, but you do not realize how the obvious problems affect even the healthy areas, because the only way you can judge is by comparison with sicker areas. You cannot imagine the feeling of joy, peace and security that is the result of a full and thorough will to face oneself. Then the interconnections will gradually afford a clearer view of reality as it concerns you. And this is the only way you can begin.

All this should not be misinterpreted to mean that you have to reach a stage of utter health before you can function well, love, perceive and determine. You can reach a stage of relative advancement in this respect by recognizing your problems in their entire significance; and that, of course, is not easy. This realization must not be confused with a quick, glib formulation of a part of the problem you have found. It must be a deep awareness, a transcending experience of comprehension of all your outer problems, hurts, unfulfillments, frustrations as a result of your inner misconceptions and subsequent faulty responses to other people and to life. When this goal has been achieved, the building-up process can begin. But long before you have truly shed the faulty reactions that are so ingrained, you will be in control of your fate because you now really and profoundly perceive yourself in relationship to your life. By such understanding, you bring fresh, clean air into all the channels that have been clogged up for so long with error and confusion. This is the real security I am talking about.

Offhand, tonight’s lecture may seem a repetition and a consolidation of some of the material from the past. And yet, when you look deeper into this topic, you will surely realize a new depth in understanding yourself. You will then see that this lecture is new in the sense that you would not have been able to understand this material and to apply it to yourself only a little while ago. Those who do not succeed now will certainly do so later. But some of you are quite ready now, if only you will take the trouble to meditate about it.

May these words take root in you. May the new friends also have found something that may eventually become a seed in their soul. A stream of love envelops all of you. May it revivify you. Be in peace. Be in God!